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The Impact of NoFollow Links on SEO Performance: Kaizen’s Latest Industry Report

Published: 27/04/22 - Updated: 09/07/24

The Impact of NoFollow Links on SEO Performance: Kaizen’s Latest Industry Report

Over the last few years, there has been one ongoing debate rocking the Digital PR industry – do nofollow links hold any SEO value? If you work in PR, you’re no stranger to the countless discussions on follow vs. nofollow links. 

In 2020, our team at Kaizen set out to settle this debate once and for all and the results we uncovered forever changed the way we evaluate link types for our clients. 

The follow vs. nofollow link experiment in a nutshell

In order to prove our theory that nofollow links do have SEO value, our team developed a controlled experiment that lasted over the course of 10 months. 

We created two sites with similar products and copy – all surrounding Christmas pet collars. Our team then built follow links to one site and nofollow links to the other. 

The sites are still currently up and running! 

FOLLOW SITE: https://christmaspetcollars.wordpress.com/christmas-wreath-collar-for-dogs/

NOFOLLOW SITE: https://xmas-pet-collars.com/christmas-wreath-collar-for-dogs/

Using Ahrefs, we measured the position of organic keywords, and the trend showed that the nofollow site saw better improvements in ranking compared to the follow site. 

Nofollow links are valuable, and you should be counting them for your clients

As Digital PRs, we tend to focus so much of our attention on link types when rating the success of a campaign. What we’ve seen through this experiment is that BOTH follow and nofollow links hold SEO value. 

Instead of hyper-focusing on link types, we as DPRs, need to look at where we are landing links. Receiving a nofollow link from a top tier publication like BBC is far more impressive than receiving a follow link from an unknown site. 

Want to learn more about this experiment? Download and read the full report. If you have any questions about the impact of nofollow links, be sure to get in touch with our Digital PR team today.

Kathy Parmisano
Published on

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